At last, a logical and methodical approach for developing high-tempo improv chops! Introducing Improv Speed Builders by Rich Willey, guaranteed to take you to the next level and beyond without all the frustration and guesswork you’ve probably already experienced.
Improv Speed Builders comes in five volumes, each includes written melodies with chord symbols transposed for C treble clef, C bass clef, B♭ instruments and E♭ instruments with over 17 hours of play-along tracks per volume designed to take you from a snail’s pace all the way up to burning! Play-along tracks contain no melody instruments, only piano, bass and drums.
Click below to check out each volume and complete your collection:
Volume 1: Twelve original “standard” blues (one per key) with over 17 hours of play-along tracks.
Volume 2: Twelve original “Bird” blues (one per key) with over 17 hours of play-along tracks.
Volume 3: Twelve original minor blues (one per key) with over 17 hours of play-along tracks.
Volume 4: Twelve original “Giant Steps” melodies (one per key) with over 17 hours of play-along tracks.
Volume 5: Twelve “Nuts & Bolts” cycles and turnarounds (that each take you through all 12 keys) with over 17 hours of play-along tracks.
Each key has five accompaniment tracks sixty choruses long.* The first starts at ♩=80 and creeps up one beat-per-minute (bpm) per chorus for sixty choruses (ending up at 140 bpm). The second track starts at ♩=120, the third track at ♩=160, the fourth track at ♩=200, and the fifth track at ♩=240. The tempo overlap between the tracks helps you ease into the higher velocities more gracefully.
The suggested strategy for getting through sixty choruses* is this: by playing a chorus and resting a chorus (or trading with a practice partner or scatting every other chorus) your chops will be able to rest as much as you play so you can go on much longer than you might think you can. Also, it’s the perfect vehicle for spending equal time on all your instruments, i.e. a chorus on trumpet, rest a chorus while picking up your flugelhorn and then play a chorus, rest a chorus while grabbing your cornet for the following chorus, etc. Or it can be a great way to spend equal amounts of time rotating through your various mutes that you might not remember to practice between gigs.
The possibilities are endless with this series!
The tempo increase is not an accelerando; each imperceptible tempo change happens precisely at the beginning of the next chorus so you are always holding a steady tempo. The tempo increases incrementally chorus by chorus so you really don’t even notice, but the next thing you know you’re negotiating changes at a much faster tempo than you ever thought you could!
Made using ProTools with real instrument sounds for your play-along tracks, this volume also includes a full set of MIDI files in case you want to practice for a long stretch at one tempo using your preferred sequencing program or Band-In-A-Box to set the tempo where you want it.
Click to the left to grab some samples, then grab an immediate PDF & MP3 download above.
Blues in C Sample Play-Along